Monday, July 9, 2018

1) The Monday Extract: New Zealand’s disgraceful role in the ‘slow genocide’ of West Papua


2) Police allegedly committed sexual harassment in Papuan student dormitory in Surabaya
3) KOMNAS HAM Papua: AI is influential in the United Nations
4) Two young Papuans, selling newspapers for study
5) Where does Rp 9.56 billion for Panggama Airport’s construction go?


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1) The Monday Extract: New Zealand’s disgraceful role in the ‘slow genocide’ of West Papua

 Marie Leadbeater | Guest writer The Monday Extract







PAPUAN YOUTHS CARRY A MOCK COFFIN DURING A DEMONSTRATION IN JAKARTA, 24 SEPTEMBER 2007, AS DOZENS TAKE PART IN THE PROTEST DEMANDING THAT THE GOVERNMENT GIVE A REFERENDUM TO WEST PAPUA. INDONESIA WON SOVEREIGNTY OVER PAPUA, FORMERLY A DUTCH COLONY, IN 1969 AFTER A REFERENDUM WIDELY SEEN AS A SHAM, WITH MANY RIGHTS ORGANISATIONS CALLING FOR A REFERENDUM FOR THE INDEPENDENCE OF PAPUA. AFP PHOTO/AHMAD ZAMRONI (PHOTO: AHMAD ZAMRONI/AFP/GETTY IMAGES)


A new study by human rights activist Marie Leadbeater looks at New Zealand’s reluctance to do anything to halt the crimes against humanity in our Pacific neighbor, West Papua.
A few years ago I wrote about New Zealand’s betrayal of the people of East Timor during the 24 years they suffered under brutal military rule from Indonesia. The records show that the New Zealand government was well-informed about the violence and repression which marked Indonesian rule but chose not to take a stand for fear of disrupting good relations with Indonesia.
West Papua’s Melanesian people are also denied genuine self-determination. New Zealand is repeating the same mistakes, pursuing an unethical foreign policy that has had tragic consequences for the West Papuan people. The situation could not be more critical. Academic research backs the West Papuan claim that the indigenous population is facing “slow genocide”. The New Zealand government is under pressure to change direction. But much more is needed.
West Papua was “gifted” to Indonesia while President Sukarno was at the helm. Suharto’s regime, aided and abetted by the West, perpetrated one of the twentieth century’s worst massacres, systematically eliminating anyone believed to have communist sympathies. Indonesia was opened up to foreign investment and adopted Western-friendly foreign and defence policies. Rich prizes awaited US corporations, not least among them the gold and copper in the mountainous interior of West Papua.
New Zealand politicians and diplomats welcomed Indonesia’s change in direction. Cold war anti-communist fervour trumped sympathy for the victims of the purge; and New Zealand was keen to increase its trade, investment and defence ties with the “new” Indonesia.
None of this was good news for the people of West Papua. A feisty resistance movement had developed, but in 1969 Indonesia managed to pass off a fraudulent Act of Free Choice as meeting the self-determination requirement in the 1962 agreement. New Zealand officials knew from first-hand experience that the West Papuans had been coerced but chose to stand with Indonesia when the United Nations sanctioned the outcome. In the 1960s a grouping of recently independent African nations did their best to stand up for West Papuan rights. They were no match for Jakarta’s backers, who included not only Western nations but also Indonesia’s conservative Asian neighbours.
New Zealand adopted a policy setting that endorsed Indonesia’s territorial integrity as sacrosanct. West Papua slipped beneath the media radar and few challenged the government’s decision to turn away. The human rights discourse about Indonesia focused on its shocking record of detaining political opponents and suspected communists and on the unfolding tragedy in East Timor.
This official complacency was challenged from time to time when coordinated campaigns showed that the resistance had never given up. In 1977 there was a sabotage campaign against the Freeport-McMoRan mine, followed by Indonesian retaliation; and in 1984 there was a flood of refugees into Papua New Guinea, prompted by another Indonesian crackdown.
When Suharto’s dictatorial regime fell in 1998, West Papuans dared to hope for change. Civil resistance and international diplomacy began to take the place of armed struggle. In New Zealand, civil society started taking greater notice of the situation, and there was a brief moment when it seemed our government might amend its “Indonesia first” policy.
In the last decade there has been an avalanche of documentation of crimes against humanity committed in West Papua over the past half century. This includes documenting the inward flow of migrants. West Papua’s diplomatic struggle has borne fruit with the grassroots or “taro roots” movements around the Pacific region who are calling for West Papua to be brought back into the Pacific family. A number of Pacific governments have taken up the cause and made strong representations at the UN General Assembly. New Zealand has so far refused to be part of this advocacy.

CENTRAL HIGHLAND VILLAGERS CARRYING THE MORNING STAR FLAG IN THE WEST PAPUA CAPITAL WHO TRAVELLED DOWN FROM THE MOUNTAINS TO JOIN SATGAS PAPUA (TASKFORCE PAPUA), A PRO-INDEPENDENCE MILITIA, 27 MAY 2000. (PHOTO BY JASON SOUTH FOR FAIRFAX MEDIA VIA GETTY IMAGES)

It’s common to hear people remark that New Zealand doesn’t speak out on human rights in West Papua because of trade concerns. Indonesia is a valued trading partner, but that’s not the full story. New Zealand makes important foreign policy decisions in consultation with its friends; diplomats are constantly exchanging information, analyses and reports with their counterparts in Washington, London, Canberra and Ottawa. Some of this sharing is revealed in declassified documentation, but it’s the tip of the iceberg.
We are a tag-along nation – a habit formed when we were tied to the apron-strings of mother England. The Second World War and the rise of the global influence of the United States modified, but did not change, the pattern. The cold war anti-communist pacts such as ANZUS and SEATO are no more, but their traces remain in extensive arrangements for defence cooperation, military exercises and in deployments to theatres of conflict. New Zealand is a member of the secretive UKUSA Agreement, known as Five Eyes, along-side Canada, Australia, Britain and the United States; UKUSA, the world’s preeminent signals intelligence collection network, has been around since 1946.
However, New Zealand has gone against the flow with its position on nuclear weapons: most notably, it enacted nuclear-free legislation and insisted on banning all visiting nuclear-powered or nuclear weapons-capable vessels. New Zealand was the only Western aligned country to take such an unequivocal stand that challenged the United States’ neither-confirm-nor-deny policy. In 1997 New Zealand also played an important role in helping to broker peace between the warring parties in the long-running conflict in Bougainville.
There have been glimmers of hope that New Zealand might move independently of its allies and give some support for West Papuan self-determination. There was a short-lived initiative sponsored by Prime Minister Walter Nash in 1960, and Foreign Minister Phil Goff made a tentative mediation offer in the early 2000s. Papuans continue to raise the possibility that New Zealand could serve as mediator in a dialogue with the Indonesian government.
Many people thought the New Zealand government would never change direction and support self-determination for East Timor – but it did happen. It must happen for West Papua too.

An edited excerpt froSee No Evil: New Zealand’s Betrayal of the People of West Papua byMarie Leadbeater (Otago University Press, $50), available at Unity Books.
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2) Police allegedly committed sexual harassment in Papuan student dormitory in Surabaya
Published 8 hours ago on 9 July 2018 By admin

Jayapura, Jubi – There was alleged harassment occurred following the civil registration drives dubbed as ‘operasi yustisi’ in a Papuan student dormitory in Surabaya on Friday (6/7/2018). Some time ago, the similar incident happened in Papuan student dormitory in Malang some time ago.
Public Lawyer from Legal Aid Institute (LBH) Surabaya, Mohamad Saleh while contacting Jubi reported the Papuan Student Alliance in Surabaya at that time was holding a weekly discussion at the Papuan Student Dormitory in Jalan Kalasan no. 10 Tambaksari, Surabaya at around 20:30 pm.

Then the Tambaksari Sub-district Head accompanied by hundreds of police officers, military and civil service officers of Surabaya Municipal Government arguing that they were carrying out the ‘operasi yustisi’. “There were 50 police, military and civil service officers who come during the students’ weekly discussion.”
Further, Saleh said two participants and a public attorney from LBH Surabaya asked for an official letter to the sub-district head, but he couldn’t prove it. “The two students, Isabella and Anindya, were trying to talk with the sub-district head, but one of the police officers yelled at Anindya with harsh words which began to heat up the atmosphere,” he said.
Moreover, he continued the police officers then pulled him and Isabella while Anindya harassed by one of those officers. “Isabella and I were dragged into a police car until our shirt buttons were loosing, while an officer grasped Anindya’s chest,” he said.
Legislator of Papua, Jhon Gobai separately regretted this incident. He added the officers should carry an assignment letter when conducting the civil registration drives. “I completely regret this incident, whereas officers didn’t bring an assignment letter to perform their duty. I ask the Police Chief to evaluate the performance of his subordinates,” he said. (*)
 
Reporter: Titus Ruban
Editor: Pipit Maizier
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3) KOMNAS HAM Papua: AI is influential in the United Nations

Published 8 hours ago on 9 July 2018 By admin

Jayapura, Jubi – Human Rights National Commission (KOMNAS HAM) Papua Representative said people should not underestimate the Amnesty International (AI) because the agency is quite influential in the United Nations.
Ramandey’s statement was related to the launched of AI’s report ‘Sudah, Kasi Tinggal Dia Mati: Pembunuhan dan Impunitas di Papua (Fine, Let them all died: Killing and Impunity in Papua)’ on 2 July 2018 in Jayapura.

The Amnesty International reports since January 2010 to 2018, the Indonesian security forces killed 95 people in both provinces of Papua and West Papua, which 69 victims killed without legal consent, and 85 were indigenous Papuans. However, the report has reaped the reaction from the police and military.
“AI is very influential in the decisions taken in the UN Human Rights Council, especially related to the human rights cases,” Ramandey told Jubi on Friday (6/7/2018).
Further, he said it should consider that the Amnesty International, which has 72 offices around the world, is the only institution received the accreditation from the UN to provide views on the alleged human rights violations.
“This is a good practice for the state to improve the legal system and litigation. A mechanism, a dynamic that the Indonesian Government—not only the police and military—should consider. The government must give a good response,” he said.
Meanwhile, the Director of LP3BH (Research, Study and Legal Assistance of Manokwari) said both civil and military officers in Indonesia have the custom to rebut over the report without sufficient data and investigation results of proper standards and methodologies. It often leads to polemical lies in public. “It could also lead to ignorance among Indonesians including Papuans about questionable legal facts in order obtaining fair, transparent and accountable information.” (*)
Reporter: Arjuna Pademme
Editor: Pipit Maizier
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4) Two young Papuans, selling newspapers for study

Published 8 hours ago on 9 July 2018 By admin

Sentani, Jubi – Awan Sol, a 19 years old student of Papuan Baptist Theology in Jayapura works part-time selling newspapers in front of the former Merpati Office at Abepura, Jayapura City to meet his daily needs.
Sol whom is native of Yahukimo District said he works early in the morning before the class and sell approximately 30 to 50 copies of newspapers every day. “Headlines are a factor whether newspapers will immediately be sold out or not. If I can sell 10, I got Rp 100 thousand. The more copies I sell, the more money I get. After the class, I continue to sell the rest of copies,” he told Jubi on Wednesday (4/7/2018).

Meanwhile, Robi Wenda, a student of Cenderawasih University has to postpone from his study due to financial issue. He is now selling the local newspapers at the Sentani Airport to support his needs. “I sell ‘Jubi’ and ‘Cepos’ every day,” he said to the reporter at the Sentani Airport, Jayapura District. (*)
 Reporter: Yance Wenda
Editor: Pipit Maizier
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5) Where does Rp 9.56 billion for Panggama Airport’s construction go?

Published 8 hours ago on 9 July 2018 By admin

Jayapura, Jubi – Papuan legislator from Yahukimo, Yalimo and Pegunungan Bintang electoral districts Natan Pahabol questioned the funds allocated for the airport construction in Panggama Sub-district Yahukimo.
He said the Papua Provincial Government allocated Rp 11.95 billion in 2016 to renovate the Panggama Airport. The amount of Rp 9.56 billion has disbursed to the contractor in the fiscal year 2017. In the same year, the contractor began to work on the former airport that was built by missionaries from the European Evangelical Agency around 1972-1973 in collaboration with the GKI Synod in Tanah Papua under the leadership of the Rev. Adam Roth.

“After that, the work discarded and until now the airport has not finished. So when it rains so heavy, the airport is flooded. By this year it cannot be used,” said Pahabol to Jubi on Friday (6/7/2018).
Further, he said during this time, the local community, especially the church workers from GKI Yalimo and Anggruk depend on this airport for their only access in and out of the region by using the small-bodied aircraft. Now, their access has obstructed due to the construction.
“We are questioning to the Public Works Office, who’s responsible for the airport’s construction? The airport is for the public access, so we hope the office could immediately find out who the contractor is?” he said.
Another Papuan legislator, John NR Gobai said it is not just the Panggama Airport but infrastructure development in some areas, especially in Papua has not finished for years. “For instance, Karang Tumarisita Bridge in Nabire District. It has not finished for three years, and it’s a responsibility of the government agency,” he said. (*)
Reporter: Arjuna Pademme
Editor: Pipit Maizier
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